Open mind, open heart

A mind is like a parachute.  It doesn’t work if it is not open.”  I saw this this quote, unattributed, a couple of days ago.


A quick online search reveals this as generally coming from Frank Zappa.  Other variations are attributed variously to Sir Thomas Dewar, Anthony J d’Angelo, Tom Evans, Jordan Maxwell, and even the Dalai Lama.

As is often the case, I started to ponder this from different angles:

  • A closed mind is one that doesn’t get a lot of use.  So when the time comes, as it always does, people who don’t use their minds can’t control their descent and they can’t land safely.
  • To extend the metaphor, not taking care of your mind is like not maintaining the parachute or packing it properly.

Naturally enough, the online search also had several ironic variations:

  • A mind is like a parachute. If it doesn’t open, you’re f***d!
  • A mind is like a parachute.  If it is open all the time, you’ll probably end up getting sucked into a jet engine.
  • I used to have an open mind, but my brains kept falling out!

My favourite alternative though was this: “I’d rather have a mind opened by wonder than one closed by belief.”

What variations have you seen or occur to you?  How might you apply this to generate effective dialogue?

Go well!



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